Neo Nazis, white supremacists and others have targeted the Committee for Racial Justice in the last few months. We held De-escalation Trainings, and Safety Trainings for the community and planning meetings in preparation for their next appearances. In September, we were moved and inspired when over 400 allies showed up at the workshop to support the anti-racist work of the Committee for Racial Justice. You let the neo nazis know that their hatred is not welcome here and that the important anti-racist work will not be stopped by them. We want to send a heartfelt thank you to all who have stepped up at this time. We want to thank all of you who have taken the time to be trained and to be a part of the planning. Your presence is immeasurably important and we are humbled and inspired by it.
However, the fight is not over and the work is ongoing. Racism, white supremacy, xenophobia, and misogyny were not created by Donald Trump. Racism and white supremacy have been a part of this nation’s history from the very beginning. The Committee for Racial Justice was not created in response to the neo nazis or Donald Trump. We have ongoing work to do. And we will continue. The next Committee for Racial Justice workshop will be held in Virginia Avenue Park on November 5th from 6 to 8:30pm. We will continue. We are prepared. They will not stop us.
The current regime has not only emboldened the white supremacists, but it has threatened our environment. The Church in Ocean Park launched Climate Action Santa Monica (CASM) in 2015, and are stepping up this effort as well. We're working towards a more sustainable community and region and have partnered with the City of Santa Monica and various schools and programs. Recently, CASM's 2017 Climate Corps members Marina Milhailova, Lara Kholsa and Amy Southern are three of the selected young people to be a part of Al Gore's Climate Reality Leaders Corps training. They give us hope and we congratulate them!
The LGBTQ community, the Disability community and women are also targets of new verbage and policies in ways that affect all of us. Last year, we launched Young People Creating Change (YPCC) for people of color, people in the disability community, people in the LGBTQ community and young women. Little did we know how important each of these would be in this new era. We need to step all of this up as well.
All of these programs were created prior to the election last November, because they were necessary at that time. Now, they are even more crucial. We have no choice but to work passionately to seek to build communities where persons of all races, cultures, languages, genders, sexualities, religions and abilities are valued, respected, honored and cared for. We are currently setting priorities and the budget for 2018, and we need your help to set those priorities. Please let us know what level of support you'll be able to give in 2018. This number is not, of course, set in stone, and this is not a contract. It is rather information that will help us plan how far we can go in 2018 with the resources we have.
Please let us know by filling out this pledge form.
Or just send an email note to Cleo Ramone, Office Manager, at letting her know what you expect to give in 2018. There's strength in our partnership!
Blessings on the journey,
Janet Gollery McKeithen
Minister, Church in Ocean Park